The Point FREE April 17, 2009 Issue No. 6 Fitchburg State College's student newspaper FSC FILE PHOTO With parking spaces at a premium on campus, students leave their cars at the Civic Center and then take the shuttle back and forth. No parking: Students have to pay the price By John McGinn Lack of sufficient commuter parking spaces is not a new prob- lem for students at Fitchburg State College. Each and every year, commuters get the shaft with parking on campus - and this year has been no different. "Parking here is horrible," said Mike Geary, a junior at FSC. "You can't get a space on campus so you have to park on the side streets. If you do that and the people that live on the street don't like it, they will call the cops and you will get towed." As the college admits more students each year, the issue with commuter parking is sure to grow as well. Most commuter students have been issued at least one parking ticket in their time at FSC. AnnMarie Caprio Dunton, interim director of housing and residential services, stated, "Since Sept. 1, 2008 through March 31, 2009, there have been 1,822 park- ing citations written, which totals $99,800." It should be noted that although $99,800 worth of citations were given out, some of those were overturned in an appeal process. Also, $22,000 of that citation money has been con- tributed to FSC's scholarship fund in the last year. Many people would think that Continued on Page 2 Special Olympics lives up to name By Carlie Roy Next month, for the sec- ond year in a row, something really special will take place on the Fitchburg State College campus. The Special Olympics, which last year brought more than 450 athletes to FSC, will be held here again on May, 1, from 8:15 a.m. to about 2 p.m. It takes a large number of dedicated volunteers to put on this event, which organiz- ers say is meant to bring one message to the world: "People with intellectual disabilities can and will succeed if given the opportunity." And at FSC, there is one volunteer who has taken on the largest role of them all. Maria Cavarretta, the women's indoor and outdoor track and field captain, has also taken on the role of event director for this year's North Central School Day Games of the Special Olympics. "Being a part of the Spe- cial Olympics last year was so remarkable that I knew I wanted to take part in it again," Cavarretta said. "I chose to take on a leader- ship role because I had a lot of ideas for the program and wanted to make a difference in these athletes' lives." Some of the duties of the Special Olympics photo Athletes go for glory in the Special Olympics. event director include planning fund-raisers, organizing meet- ings, and coordinating com- munication with the Special Olympics, the community, and the volunteers. "Although this is a time- consuming job, seeing the smiles of the athletes on the day of the event makes it all Continued on Page 2 How does Shakepeare sound in a Wild West saloon? Audiences can find out for themselves at MainStage productions of "The Taming of the Shrew. " The play, set in Wyoming in 1890, offers a new look at a classic. Story on Page 2. Staff photo by John McGinn 2 -April 17,2009 THE POINT 'Shrew' production doesn't have to be tame By Mark Smolak What do you do if you find yourself bored one night? Do you think about going to a movie? How about going to a play instead? Nothing beats the experience of seeing actors perform in a live production, accord- ing the Kelly Morgan, a professor in the English department's theater track. "Seeing a play live means that the performance that evening is for those that night only," Morgan says. "Today, so many students live with iPods, their cell phones, on the computer and in front of the television. This is break- ing away from these electronic forms of communication to experience live enter- tainment." Students can experience it for them- selves by attending MainStage performanc- es of "The Taming of the Shrew," to be presented at 7:30 p.m. on April 23-25; 2 p.m. on April 26; 7:30 p.m. on April 29; 6 p.m. on April 30; and 7:30 p.m. on May 1 and 2. Performances will be held in McKay Auditorium. Tickets cost $5 for students, staff, and senior citizens; $10 for the gen- eral public. There will also be a special free perfor- mance at 4:30 p.m. on April 22, scheduled to coincide with "Visions." Morgan is directing the production, which he says has actually been three years in the making. "I chose this play because I have had a concept brewing in my mind about how to bring this story to campus in a way that will connect to [students] while still honoring the intent of Shakespeare," Morgan says. Staff photo by John McGinn Wyoming in 1890 isn 't the most likely place to find Shakespeare - but it's a good place to start, as it provides the setting for Fitchburg State College's "The Taming of the Shrew." The concept was to present the play as a Western, Morgan says, set in a Wild West saloon just days before Wyoming is granted statehood and becomes the first state to grant women the right to vote. "It offers questions about sexist aspects "It offers questions about sexist aspects of great literature and the true intent of Shakespeare for this play. It is also a lot of fun, as we have added a bar fight, saloon girls and dancing. " - Kelly Morgan of great literature and the true intent of Shakespeare for this play," Morgan says. "It is also a lot of fun, as we have added a bar fight, saloon girls and dancing as well as early women's rights songs and poetry." It all adds up to a worthwhile experi- ence, according to student Tyler Welch, who directed "Three One-Act Plays by Christopher Durang" in March at FSC. "The actors and actions on stage evoke feelings and emotions that cause one to either get angry, or sad, or maybe even pee their pants with laughter," Welsh says. "Not only that, but you are also support- ing the arts and seeing what talented and amazing people are on campus." Welsh says he has seen attendance increasing for theater events on campus, and it's a trend he hopes will continue. "We have some great venues here, amazing on- campus talent, and spectacular theater and tech-theater programs," Welch says. FSC file photo Special events, such as the Great Move-In, can add to the parking confusion on campus. Lots of parking issues on campus Continued from Page 1 paying $50 dollars for your commuter parking pass would entitle you to a park- ing space on campus. Here at FSC, that's not the case. Giving out more passes than there are spaces is one major reason why it is nearly impossible to find a spot in one of the lots. With only three commuter parking lots on the main campus, many students are forced to park at the Wallace Civic Center; the general consensus is that student's don't like this. "I have been dealing with the Civic Cen- ter parking lot for years," said Vito Desilva, a senior. "The shuttle bus is never on time and if you end up walking, it can be dangerous." In the winter months, sidewalks between the Civic Center and campus are not cleared, forcing students to walk in the street with cars speeding by them. Once spring rolls around, those same sidewalks are covered in mud. One possible solution to the parking woes on campus would be a dependable shuttle service. Unfortunately at FSC, the shuttle buses seem to travel on their own schedules. The shuttle, which is serviced by the Mon- tachusett Regional Transit Authority, is scheduled to run in 15-minute routes from the Civic Center through campus and to the MBTA Commuter Rail station. As most MART shuttle users at FSC can tell you, waiting for a shuttle can sometimes take 45 minutes or longer. Clearly, the parking situation on the Fitchburg State campus is one that needs to be addressed. If the college intends to herd as many students as they can to the Civic Center parking lot, then they need to provide a timely and reliable shuttle service to get to the main campus. With student numbers rising, we can only hope that serious changes will be made to make the commuter students' daily trip to campus more pleasant. Special Olympics Continued from Page 1 worthwhile," Cavarretta said. It takes a whole team of support personnel to make this event a suc- cess: Special Olympics personnel, volunteers, people who make dona- tions, and also spectators. If you would like to volunteer or make a donation to this year's Special Olympics, you can either stop by Dr. Laurie DeRosa's office at McKay in room B 137, or you can contact Maria Cavarretta at firstname.lastname@example.org. edu to make arrangements. If you are unable to commit a full day to volunteer and if money is too tight to donate, you might want to help out as one of the "Fan in the Stands," which is equally important. These athletes need fans to cheer for them just like all other athletes, so come on down to Elliot Field on Friday, May 1 . New Horizons The Fitchburg State College com- munity recently welcomed two new employees, Crystal Joseph and Kris- ten Nelson. Both are working for Expanding Horizons - Joseph as director, and Nelson as staff assistant/coordinator for career and mentor programs. The department supervisor is Stan Bucholc. THE POINT April 17,2009-3 J> Vincent Tranfaglia is launching his new company, Blind Faith Pic- tures, with help from Fitch burg State College intern Sarah Taylor. Blind Faith puts the focus on film By Ashley Galicia Lights! Cameras! A green car- pet? Well, that is what they'll he rolling out for the Blind Faith green-carpet event. The new film studio's big kick- off event is designed to show that it's going green and also trying to bring jobs back into New Eng- land. Sarah Taylor, a student at Fitchburg State College, is cur- rently interning at Blind Faith Pictures, and helped put together this event. It will be held April 23 at the Twin River Casino in Lincoln, RI, and the public is invited to pur- chase tickets and attend. Taylor said a number of celeb- rities will be attending, as well. "Some of the confirmed guests are [Miss Massachusetts] Cris- tina Nardozzi, [television actress] Susie Castillo, [WJAR-TV Chan- nel 1 meteorologist and reporter] RJ Heim, and [Foo Fighters key- boardist] Rami Jaffee." Vincent Tranfaglia, the presi- dent and executive producer of Blind Faith Pictures, hopes his company can help independent filmmakers launch their dreams into reality. "We really want to kick off an explosion of business activity, bringing people and businesses together to stimulate the local economy and create jobs," says Tranfaglia. He also wants to help ease the current economic crisis by provid- ing jobs for the arts and entertain- ment industry. In addition, he hopes his plan for going green and being an eco- friendly movie studio will encour- age other companies to do the same. "Blind Faith Pictures will become a multi-faceted arts and entertainment corporation in the next two years, with the ability to serve a variety of production needs." according to the com- pany's promotional material. Along with helping filmmak- ers, Blind Faith is making an effort to help New England chari- ties. Some of the profits of this first green-carpet event will be donated to the House of Compas- sion, a non-profit boarding house in Cumberland, Rl that serves low-income persons suffering from HIV and AIDS. Upon learning that financial problems could force the house to close its doors, Blind Faith stepped in to help. That help is appreciated by residents such as Noel Johnson, a 53-year-old who has been living with HIV for the past 1 years. "I'm on top of my game," he says, giving credit to the house where he enjoys his own bedroom and a "family" environment for $174 a month. "Here you are a human with dignity and respect," Johnson said. Taylor and Tranfaglia say they have a lot of faith in the new stu- dio and its potential to help those in the film industry and beyond. They plan to offer new film- makers a chance to send in their work, or even get a job behind the scenes. For information on purchas- ing tickets for the kickoff event, go to http://blindfaithpictures. com/events/2009-cinema-splash- pricing. Actress explores funny side of family By Lee Martin In these times of unrest, it's important to remember and keep a firm grasp on the familial bonds we share. Few know that better than actress Antoinette LaVecchia, who will be per- forming her one-woman show "In Spite of Myself (or How to be a Good Italian Daughter)," here on campus on May 1 . "It's a love story between a mother and daughter," LaVec- chia says of her act. "These people are trying to understand each other, but one is an Americanized woman and the other is a former immigrant. It's really funny, because of the culture clash present." Reviewers have described the show as hilarious and full of heart, which is something that LaVecchia says she understands all too well. "I think people like this because the Italian culture in general is just full of warmth and humor. I think they can relate to it very well." Apart from her family, inspi- ration for LaVecchia comes from ... well ... everywhere! "The newspapers, my stu- dents, my experiences, other plays, life, everything - 1 think as an artist, that's what you aspire to. When you're not inspired by anything it's harder to move forward." As an actress, LaVecchia has appeared in numerous stage pro- ductions, and has made several appearances in films and televi- sion. She has also performed for more than 2,000 people at Carnegie Hall. In the span of her career she's worked alongside actors includ- ing Steve Buscemi, Gina Ger- shon, Ralph Macchio, and Billy Crudup, in numerous dramatic and comedic roles. Whether she prefers to work in theater, film, or TV is a toss- up for her. "Theater is what I know best, but film and TV excite me," Antoinette LaVecchia is bringing her one-woman show, "In Spite of Myself, " to FSC on May 1. LaVecchia says. "I've had 20 years of theater experience, but the newness of TV and film still interests me. It's enjoyable to do them all." She adds, however, "There's a certain fun element to per- forming live on stage with an audience that can't be emulated with a TV or film audience." When not performing, LaVec- chia says she enjoys physical activity, especially yoga. More than anything, however, she just enjoys working her job, writing and acting. "I'm a little too immersed in what I do to have conventional hobbies," she says. "Essentially my career is my life." After appearing on campus, LaVecchia has plans for a new theater performance she's been working on, called "Village Sto- ries." The show will follow hun- dreds of years of activity taking place in her birthplace in Italy. "I've already begun work- shopping it, and I can't wait to get it going, because it's very close to my heart," she says. LaVecchia will he performing at 7 p.m. on May 1, in Percival Auditorium. Tickets can still be purchased through CenterStage. Picture-perfect fund-raiser set By Arianne Avellino It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. But can a picture motivate people to volunteer their time for a good cause? Fitchburg State photography majors Brian Smith and Gina Descarreaux have created a photo exhibition for the Salva- tion Army in hopes of doing just that. The Fitchburg branch of the Salvation Army is looking to attract more people to volunteer, donate, and utilize the services offered. One way they are try- ing to reach the community is through the "Good-Wil" Sun- day brunch event, run by local performer Wil Darcangelo, fea- turing a photo exhibition that highlights what the Salvation Army is all about. The task given to Smith and Descarreaux, two students whose public-relations class is working with the Salvation Army, was to create an exposi- tion of 30 or so photos capturing the essence of the good work done by this organization. They decided to approach it by evoking emotion from view- ers through photographs that focus on the children helped by the Salvation Army. The photographers want to show how children gain from the efforts of this organization. "We hope to raise people's awareness about the Salvation Army," Smith said. "Most don't know the extent of what they do. We also want to make people aware that they can donate to the Salvation Army by not only attending the exhibit, but by purchasing our work, all of the profits of which will go right back to the organization." The "Good-Wil" brunch and photo exhibition will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 19, in the Fitchburg Senior Center at 1 4 Wallace Ave. Tickets cost $12 for adults and $8 for chil- dren. Proceeds will benefit the Blue Star Mothers of America Leominster Chapter 1 . 4 -April 17,2008 THE POINT See a twinkle of 'Twilight' By Kara Noonan I am sure most of you have heard the chatter surrounding Stephenie Meyer's "Twilight" books. It seems that the pages have been caught in the wind and blown onto the doorsteps of every female romance-novel lover. My friends are reading them, my co-workers, and even my professors. All this jabber enticed me into opening up the 500 paged, first of the series "Twilight" (Little, Brown and Company). I soon found myself engrossed in Mey- er's exquisite descriptions that allow you to seemingly see, taste, smell, and touch what the narrator and protagonist, Bella, is experiencing. Bella is an ordinary girl, a bit uncoordi- nated, and likes to keep to herself. She has just recently come to live with her father in Forks, Washington; it's a place that sees more rain than anywhere in the United States. But through all the gloom she discovers Edward Cullen, whose chiseled good looks and ravenous stare intrigue her. Only, Edward seems a bit peculiar. He begins avoiding her, then following her. Soon Bella demands the truth about him, even though he warns her that getting too close to him is not in her best interest. Edward Cullen is a vampire. He does not drink the blood of humans Photo by Annapur After reading "Twilight, "fans can go on to collect the other books in the series. though, as he is sort of a vegetarian, but this does not mean that he has lost all craving for it. Besides the great risk involved Bella and Edward spiral further into a great love affair and Bella soon finds herself face to face with things she always believed only existed in nightmares. A compelling love story demands seem- ingly impossible obstacles that the lovers must hurdle over. Twilight has this. Edward needs to gain approval from his vampire family as well as overcome his thirst for Bella's blood. Bella sacrifices her parents, her friends, and herself all for love. It is how we imagine love should feel. I know I was left wondering where my Edward Cullen is Meet your virtual neighbors in Animal Crossing: City Folk By Kevin Chaple The Animal Crossing franchise is based on a simple concept: You play the part of a character moving into a new house in a new town. Upon arriving, you meet Tom Nook, who happens to own the properly you just moved into. He explains the loan you owe him and gives you a part-time job working for him to pay it off. This initiates a basic training sequence in which you do a few random tasks - making deliveries, mailing letters, planting trees - for Nook, while also learning the basics of the game. Once you've finished the basic tasks, you're on your own to continue exploring your town. You don't even have to pay your mortgage off. If you do, however, Nook upgrades your house; this will give you another loan to pay off, which in turn allows for upgrades to repeat. Upgrad- ing your house is definitely worthwhile, as Nook's shop has a changing variety of home furnishings available for purchase and you're definitely going to need more room for all the stuff you buy! On paper, this may sound pretty boring. Working in a game to pay off a mortgage? It's not fun in real life, so why would it make a game interesting? Amazingly, it actually is fun. It's also incredibly addicting. Really, you can do whatever you want. You can also go online with friends and visit one another's towns. The best thing about Animal Crossing is, it's real-time world. If you play the game at night, it will be night in your town. If you play in the winter, there will be snow on the ground in your town. If you play on Christ- mas, you'll find Jingle the reindeer visiting your town, giving out presents. This real -world connection with seasons and time of day also carries over to the bugs and fish you find. Mosquitoes, for example, a 8 <L. &* Seasonal activities are part of the fun in the Wii game Animal Crossing: City Folk. can only be caught in the summer. Some creatures are rarer than others, making the collecting aspect particularly fun. Sharks are a difficult catch and therefore carry a heftier amount of bells, should you sell to Nook. There is also a museum in town where you can donate your fish and bugs, as well as fossils you may dig up to assemble dinosaurs. Rare paintings you pick up in the city can be donated to the museum, provided you didn't get suckered into buying a forgery. The museum makes the collecting process that much more addicting. The only problem with Animal Cross- ing: City Folk is that, in all honesty, it isn't much of an upgrade from the franchise's previous installment, Animal Crossing: Wild World, released in 2005 for the por- table Nintendo DS. The city area is the biggest change, but there really isn't that much to do in the city. In fact, if you're playing late at night after the shops close, there's barely anything you can do. Taking the bus to the city from your town is barely ever worth the time. You can pick City Folk up alone at $49.99 or bundled with WiiSpeak at $69.99. WiiSpeak is a small microphone you place on top of your television to pick up the sound from the room, allowing you to talk to others in-game when playing online. At this time, Animal Crossing is the only game using WiiSpeak, but Nintendo has also released the free WiiSpeak Channel online, allowing users to chat. While it might not be the best Wii game out there, it's definitely the one you'll get the most out of, thanks mainly to the previ- ously mentioned changing seasons. The activities and events listed here barely scratch the surface of all you can do in the game. Even if you play half an hour a day for a year, you'll still have plenty left to do. There is always something going on in Animal Crossing. Remember 'Oblivion Seekers' By John Ochiltree One always has a sense of dread with the books being assigned at the begin- ning of the semester. Students look at the pile of books with disbelieving eyes and say, "There's nothing worthwhile here." That was the attitude when a book fell into this author's lap for a World Litera- ture class. The book was "The Oblivion Seekers" by Isabelle Eberhardt. "The Oblivion Seekers" is a collec- tion of short stories by a woman whose life was more interesting then one would think. Born as an illegitimate daughter to Swiss royalty and raised as a boy, Eber- hardt excelled in learning. Her father wanted his daughter to be educated, and she soon became a polyglot, even speak- ing Arabic. She later emigrated from France to Algeria, where she converted to Islam. She met a man who would later become her husband, she wrote about her travels and the people she met, and she hung out in kif bars. Kif, for those who don't know, is the Algerian equivalent of mari- juana. So right now you must be thinking, "Wow, this girl is pretty cool." Well, she later settles down in a remote hut to get to writing, when a flash flood swoops by, killing her and her husband. She was 28. Kind of makes you think, "Man, what have I been doing with my life? She was only 28 and she did all that really cool stuff." The book itself is beautifully written. Eberhardt had a way with words that few authors today possess. She wrote stories with themes that were, at the time, sensitive to most Euro- peans. The stories deal with the French occupation of Algeria, European views of the East, and the West's relations with the Muslim world. Most of the stories are incredibly memorable, especially the one titled "Criminal." It tells the story of an Algeri- an man who sells his farm to the French, only to be financially shafted by them. He becomes very poor and is forced to work for some bourgeois Frenchmen. The old man gets his revenge by setting fire to the rich man's barn. Violence was his only way to get back at the rich. I highly recommend reading this book. It's only 80 pages and it is a really quick read. It won't take up too much of your time. So go and take it out from a library, buy it, or I'll even let you borrow it from me. Clip art on a locker shows Isabelle Eberhardt is still an inspiration. THE POINT April 17, 2009-5 Internships communicate a future By Dwight Stearns What are you doing for the rest of your life? This is a question that we ask ourselves more and more as we get older. It's the rea- son that we go to school. But there is one final step that many stu- dents must take before being flung out into the real-world workforce: the internship. Dana Volke, a senior at Fitchburg State College, is doing an internship at WBZ news in Boston. "I'm really excited," Volke said. "It wasn't until this past year that I really knew what I wanted to do." Like all communications majors, Volke had to attend four meetings run by Dr. Charles Sides. It was here that he learned about how to make a portfolio, resume, and how to do a demo defense. The demo/portfolio defense is argu- ably the most important part of the whole process. "Going into the defense. I was super scared," Volke said. "Looking back, I don't know why I was. All you need to do is be prepared and put your best foot forward." The contents of a demo/portfolio will vary according to what students are attempt- The WBZ news van is on the scene in Boston, setting up for a report. ing to do on their internships. For example, a video demo reel consists of three to four clips that clock in at anywhere from one to three minutes. The best suggestion that Volke has to offer those preparing their own demo reels/ portfolios is to make sure that they use their most professional work. "The mistake that I made was not keep- ing track of all my work throughout the years." he said. "I had to create special clips specifically for my reel." After the defense, which is done in front of a panel of three professors, the students are offered internships that best suit their interests and abilities. While they aren't always what the stu- dents think they want, it is often for the best. Matthew Keene, a graduate of FSC, went to Norton Public Access, which wasn't his first choice. "I wanted to go out to L.A., but that didn't end up happening," Keene said. "However, Norton ended up being the right fit. and now I have a pretty decent job that will act as a springboard for what I want to do." Volke also said some experience in public access, which he put on his resume. "Anything that you can do to help yourself out is crucial," he said. "Any sort of work will help you learn." He contends that the process will be dif- ferent for everyone. "Once you figure out what you want to do, the rest sort of falls into place," he said. "This school [FSC] is very techni- cal, so we have skills that most other college kids don't have any idea about." Leader's Training both physical and Camp helps build mental strength By Craig R. Transue Are you looking for a summer experience away from New Eng- land that will also help you in the real world? Leader's Training Camp is a fast-paced, four week summer experience. During LTC, a student cadet will learn how the military trains and works. "At first, I didn't know what to expect," said Student Cadet Patrick Dolan. "But when I got there and started training, it all made sense." At training, student cadets will be participating in activities that will challenge them physically and mentally. The objective of LTC is to build leaders mentally and physically. "At LTC, the counselors allowed me to take charge and train," said Dolan. The experi- ence student cadets gain from LTC can be applied to student lifestyles and carried on through to the work place. "Instructors drilled methods of being successful and why it's important to be a solid moral character in the workplace," Dolan said. Those student cadets who choose to sign up for the four- week summer course will be going to Fort Knox, KY. Student Cadet Anthony Grass- ini was intrigued that he got to leave New England for once and explained, "Being from New England, I have not traveled a lot. Going to LTC was an adventure for me." At Fort Knox, student cadets will learn how the military works and train how the military trains. ROTC Cadets in training building a single rope bridge. The course is broken up into two sections: classroom course training and field training. For instance, cadets will be learn- ing military courtesies, military structure, and military life in the classroom. In field environments, cadets will be training and getting famil- iar with combat water survival training, basic rifle marksman- ship, situational training exer- cises, and leadership reaction courses. "Not only was I able to fire an assault rifle, but I was also taught weapon discipline. Weapon disci- pline is important. You can't have just anybody carry a weapon, especially an assault rifle," said Grassini. Once on the ground, cadets will be broken up into teams, and rotations will start in group leadership. For example, the class leader will be in charge of accountability in the classroom. "Managing a team and its resources gave me the ability to multitask and gave me more con- fidence when making decisions," Dolan said. In the field, the team leader will be in charge of receiving an assignment, issuing a warn- ing order of the assignment and making necessary movements to accomplish the mission. Grassini said, "Knowing the troop leading procedure helps me tremendously in the civilian world." Any qualified freshman or sophomore college student can join LTC. Enrolling in LTC does not mean you have to be obligated to the Army. LTC is designed for a student who wants to get a feel for the Army to see if he or she is inter- ested in joining. It can also be for those students who want to learn leader training skills. For students who want to be challenged this summer, enroll- ment is open. Go down to the ROTC office in room 110 of Thompson Hall, or call at 978- 665-3126. For further information and an in-depth description of LTC, visit www.fsc.edu/rotc/index.cfm. FSC close to home for nursing maj or By Lee Martin In these troubled times more than ever, the public has needed fresh new doctors, nurses, and medics of all types to look out for the public good. Amanda Marcil, a nursing major from Fitchburg State Col- lege, understands that all too well, but has more than the public good in mind. "At the risk of sounding cli- che," Marcil has said of her career aspiration, "I've wanted to do this since I was really little." Marcil, a resident of Lunen- burg, lives off-campus, in her own words "two seconds away from the school." As a student with relatives who have worked at FSC, she enjoys the campus a good deal. Her father currently works here, she said, and her mother used to, so she feels a strong sense of familiarity with the campus. "It's like I lived there, I know the place front to back." she said. Marcil enjoys junk food, watch- ing reality TV, and listening to all sorts of music, "except really hard rock." In her spare time she has been learning how to play the piano. She used to also play the flute, but as she puts it: "It was pretty hard." After she earns her degree, Mar- cil has her future all mapped out. At some point in the near future she plans to get married. "But I don't want any kids," she adds ^ with a laugh. And then she hopes to travel. "I'd love to see Europe," she says. "It looks amazing." 6 -April 17, 2009 THE POINT A DISTINGUISHED CAREER CAN START WITH OUR SCHOLARSHIP.^ Captain An HPSP Medical Recipient If you'd like to begin a health care career that sets you apart from your peers, consider the U.S. Army. Through the R Edward'Hebert Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship Program, students can receive full tuition for a professional degree in medicine or dentistry. The program offers: > • Full tuition at an accredited medical or dental school A sign-on bonus of $20,000 _j Reimbursement for books, nonexpendable equipment and some academic fees A monthly stipend of $1,900 ARMY STRONG. 7 - April 17.2009 THE POINT October 26, 2007 ~ 7 Laptops: weapons of mass distraction? By Craig R. Transue Have you ever been in a class where the student in front of you spends the entire semester surfing the Internet while you try to stay focused? Currently at Fitchburg State College, many professors have authorized their students to bring in laptops to take notes and par- ticipate in class assignments. The problem with this is that as the professor is up front teach- ing, many of the students with laptops are distracting not only themselves, but also the students around them. Many of the individuals who bring their laptops to class know they won't be able to pay atten- tion but do it anyway. "Occasionally, meaning all the time, if the professor gives me the opportunity to bring in my laptop, I will take advantage of it and surf the Net the whole class," says Nick Bruegge, a current FSC student. "When it comes to using my personal laptop in class, it is a total distraction," Bruegge says. "I am not saying it hinders my learning; I am just not there, I am in cyberspace." Yet laptops can be a useful tool in the classroom. They give students the ability to download course documents, use Microsoft Word to type notes FSC FILE PHOTO When students have the discipline to avoid distraction, laptops can be useful tools in the classroom. in a faster, more organized man- ner, and do quick research on the fly to answer a professor's question. Bringing laptops to class also allows students to be more flex- ible with their schedules. With students going to three and four classes a day, eating, and going to work, the ability to bring one laptop instead of a backpack full of notebooks can be a huge benefit. "With my computer, I know I can juggle my college, military [ROTC], civilian, and personal lives more manageably," explains Bruegge. This is an exciting time to join the UMass Lowell family. Academic quality is high, campus life is vibrant, and the experience of being a student here is better than ever — with Living-Learning Communities, internships and coops, study abroad opportunities and dozens of accelerated Bachelor's-to-Master's programs. Find out more today at www.uml.edu/admissions. Y^rMi U n i vers ity of v£ mm Massachusetts UMASS Lowell Office of Undergraduate Admissions UMass Lowell 883 Broadway, Suite 1 1 Lowell, MA 01854-5104 www.uml.edu/admissions So, does having a personal computer in class actually help or hinder learning? The answer seems to depend on the individual who is using it. What can be a distraction for one student can be a huge advantage for another. For some students, the laptop might even be both. "When it comes to using my personal laptop in class, it is a total distraction. I am not saying it hinders my learning; I am just not there, I am in cyberspace. " - Nick Bruegge "Personal computers can go both ways," Bruegge says. "They can either allow me to check the lat- est Red Sox score or they can allow me to be more flexible and accomplish college work to get me ahead in classes." For those who cannot sepa- rate their personal life from their school life, bringing a laptop to class might be a bad decision. Whatever your position on the topic is, it's important to remem- ber that by surfing the Internet during class you hurt not only your GPA, but the students around you as well. Rotaract club puts the focus on service By Lisa McKeon Are you looking for the ulti- mate resume builder and a chance to help yourself as well as oth- ers? That's what's being offered to Fitchburg State College stu- dents who join the Rotaract club on campus. A Rotary-spon- sored service club for men and women ages 1 8 to 30, Rotaract clubs are either community or university- based; there are currently more than 7,000 Rota- ract clubs world- wide. "This club will open new doors and a new opportunity," said FSC graduate Michael F. Ellis, who is now a district governor of Rotary International. "It is truly a leadership experience that few of your peers have embraced." The Rotaract club does not only focus on local community- service projects, but helps people in need worldwide. "In the past we had an Xbox tournament to raise money for an orphanage in Peru," said FSC student Amanda Grant, president of the club on campus. "It is a great feeling to help others. Also, our club plants and maintains the flowers on Main Street." Grant continued, "We have a really fun event coming up, a fashion show in May." Jhalisa Potts, a sophomore, is a new member of the Rotaract club. "I'm happy that I joined because it gives me something to do on campus," Potts said. "The environment is really laid-back and friendly. I am extremely A 1\ excited about the fashion show coming up because we are holding auditions right on campus." The fashion show, sponsored by Kohl's and presented by the members of the club, is going to take place at the district confer- ence in May. The enthusiasm from the mem- bers and committee is not limited to club events. It's a great way to meet people in all different types of careers, Grant said, providing an excep- tional opportunity for networking. And, she said, "This will look fantastic on your resume." Ellis urged anyone who is bored to think about joining. "The idea of service is fun; it doesn't have to be a drag," he said. "It brings change and hope to our commu- nity and others ... and you'll feel the fellowship of Rotary." 8 -April 17, 2009 THE POINT Sudoku Strong showing for track teams Answer from previous issue 7 4 9 2 16 3 8 5 8 |3 i 2 4:95 7 16 615 3 7 8 4 9 2 5 9 7 1(6:8 2 3 4 8 2 3 5 4 9 7:6 1 4 6 1 2:73 8:5 9 6 3 8 9 2:1 5)4 7 1 7 2 6 5 4 9| 8 3 9 5 4 3 | 8 | 7 1 I 2 6 The Fitchburg State men's and women's outdoor track and field team competed at the George Davis Invitational hosted by UMass Lowell on Easter weekend. Sophomore Matt Muolo (Stoneham, Mass./Stoneham) led the Falcons with two, top- 10 finishes en route to being named the MASCAC Field Player of the Week for the second time this season. Muolo collects the weekly honor after leading Fitchburg State in the field, earning a top finish in the javelin (55.03 meters) and a seventh=place finish in the shot-put (12.09 meters). On the track, junior Alex Ivanov (Carl- isle, Mass./Concord-Carlisle) led the Fitch- burg State men's team, placing fourth in the 1 1 0-meter hurdles with a time of 1 7.44 sec- onds. Sophomore Devon Jennings (Brock- ton, Mass./Brockton) also ran strong for the Falcons, finishing sixth overall in the 100- meter dash (11.61), while freshman Brian Mountain (Southwick, Mass./Southwick- Tolland) notched an eighth-place finish in the 400 meter dash with a time of 53.17 seconds. For the women, junior Lindsay Supre- nant (Feeding Hills, Mass./Agawam) led Fitchburg State with two top- 10 finishes, including a fourth-place finish in the ham- mer throw with a distance of 34.23 meters. Suprenant was also solid in the women's shot-put, finishing 10th in the event with a distance of 9.32 meters Get to know THE POINT We are located in the basement of Hammond: B27 We meet weekly: Monday 2-3 p.m. Our phone number: 1 (978) 665-3647 Our e-mail address: email@example.com Our office hours: Mon. 9-10 a.m. Mon. 12:30-2 p.m. Wed. 11am-12p.m. Wed. 2-3 p.m. Fri. 12:30-1:30 p.m. Please let us know about possible stories, things that are happeningon camp us , ca mi ng e ve nts for you r cl ubs . I nqu ire about advertising foryour business, send letters to the editor, have your questions answered. We always need more help I Interested in writing? Taking photos? Helping with layout? Come to a meeting, or drop us an e-mail. Improve your skills, make some friends, and it looks good on your resume, too!